Silk Smitha, item girl of South Indian films

The real name of the item dancer of Bollywood, Silk Smita, is Vijayalakshmi. Born on December 2, 1960, Silk died on September 23, 1996. Silk predominantly worked in South Indian language movies as an extra actress. Her role as the character titled ‘Silk’ got noticed in the 1979 Tamil movie ‘Vandichakkaram’ and she started being named after the character.

silk smita

In the early 1980s Silk Smitha became the most sought-after erotic actress of the South Indian film industry. In 17 years of her acting career she had worked in about 450 movies in Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Malayalam and Hindi languages. She apparently committed suicide in her Chennai apartment on September 23, 1996, aged 35 years old.

Silk Smitha  Facts

Early Life of Silk Smitha

  • Real name is Vijayalakshmi.
  • Born on December 2, 1960 to the family of Ramallu and Sarasamma in Eluru in Andhra Pradesh
  • Left school after her fourth standard (At about 8 years of age)
  • She was very good looking. Because of with uninvited attention, her family married her off at a very young age.
  • Her husband and in-laws ill-treated her. She ran away to Madras (Chennai) to live with an aunt.

silk smitha 3

 

Film Career of Silk Smitha

  • Silk started as a touch-up artist for a D grade actress. She got break in a small character role.
  • She was discovered by actor and director Vinu Chakravarthy. He also renamed her Smitha and started grooming her for movies. His wife taught her English and they also helped her for dance training.
  • She debuted in a Malayalam movie ‘Inaye Thedi’
  • She played a role of a bar girl named ‘Silk’ in 1979 Tamil movie ‘Vandichakkaram’. After the success of the character Smitha also added Silk to her name.
  • Because of her sex appeal she is featured in roles of cabaret dancers and vamps
  • She became the ultimate symbol of sensuality. A vast majority of her movies were ‘softcore’ by Indian standards.
  • Her last movie, a Tamil movie ‘Subaash’, was released two days before her death.

silk-smitha-images

Affairs of Silk Smitha

  • Silk Smitha had many lovers
  • Producers, directors and A-grade actors who were linked to her.
  • Director Velu Prabhakaran confessed that he had an intimate relationship with Silk Smitha and had cheated on his girlfriend for her.
  • Married director Vinu Chakravarthy, also had a secret relationship with Silk Smitha.

silk smitha 1

Death of Silk Smitha

  • Silk Smitha’s popularity began to wane by mid-1990s.
  • She had a live-in boyfriend who reportedly lured her into producing films.
  • Silk Smitha’s two home production movies had flopped and she was in a huge debt
  • She committed suicide in her Chennai apartment on September 23, 1996, aged 35 years old. She was found hanging by a rope from the ceiling fan of her bedroom at 11.30 a.m.
  • A post-mortem report on Silk Smitha revealed a large amount of bananas and chocolates in her stomach.
  • She had left a suicide note saying she was frustrated with repeated failures in her life.

silk smitha 2

Legacy of Silk Smitha

  • A 2011 biographical film titled ‘The Dirty Picture’ is made on the life of Silk Smitha’s life.
  • The Hindi language movie was produced by Ekta Kapoor and directed by Milan Luthria.
  • Vidya Balan was featured as Silk. She later won Best Actress award for the role.
  • The movie was released on Smitha’s birthday (on December 2, 2011).
  • Silk Smitha’s family claimed that the movie was made without her family’s consent. Ekata later told that the movie is not based on Silk Smitha’s life.
  • In 2013, a Kannada movie ‘Dirty Pictures: Silk Sakkath Hot’ featuring Pakistani actress Veena Malik as Silk Smitha was released. The movie a huge hit in Karnataka.
  • A Malayalam movie ‘Climex’ also features Sana Khan as Silk Smitha. The movie was released on May 24, 2013

Actress-Veena-Malik-as silk smitha

Actress Veena Malik as Silk Smitha in 2013 Kannada movie ‘Dirty Pictures: Silk Sakkath Hot’

vidya-balan-as-silk-smitha

Actress Vidya Balan as Silk Smitha in 2011 Hindi movie, ‘The Dirty Picture’

Filmography of Silk Smitha

year – movie – Language
1979 – Inaye Thedi – Malayalam
1979 – Vandichakkaram – Tamil
1979 – Pushyaraagam – Malayalam
1979 – Ottapettavar – Malayalam
1980 – Karimbana – Malayalam
1980 – Saraswatheeyaamam – Malayalam
1980 – Ivar – Malayalam
1980 – Rajaneegandhi – Malayalam
1981 – Avatharam – Malayalam
1981 – Vayal – Malayalam
1981 – Alaigal Oivathillai – Tamil
1981 – Seethakoka Chiluka – Telugu
1981 – Sneham Oru Pravaaham – Malayalam
1981 – Pinneyum Pookkunna Kaadu – Malayalam
1982 – Yamakinkarudu – Telugu
1982 – Moondram Pirai – Tamil
1982 – Theeram Thedunna Thira – Malayalam
1982 – Sagalakala Vallavan – Tamil
1982 – Pattanathu Rajakkal – Tamil
1982 – Neram Vandhachu – Tamil
1982 – Theerpu – Tamil
1982 – Thanikattu Raja – Tamil
1982 – Ranga – Tamil
1982 – Sivantha Kankal – Tamil
1982 – Parvaiyin Marupakkam – Tamil
1982 – Kaalan – Malayalam
1983 – Moondru Mugam – Tamil
1983 – Paayum Puli – Tamil
1983 – Thudikkum Karangal – Tamil
1983 – Sadma – Hindi
1983 – Thai Veedu – Tamil
1983 – Nizhal Moodiya Nirangal – Malayalam
1983 – Attakkalasam – Malayalam
1983 – Eettappuli – Malayalam
1983 – Snehabandham – Malayalam
1983 – Prathigna – Malayalam
1983 – Rathilayam – Malayalam
1983 – Thanga Magan – Tamil
1983 – Khaidi – Telugu
1983 – Jeet Hamaari – Hindi
1983 – Jaani Dost – Hindi
1983 – Silk Silk Silk – Tamil
1983 – Soorakottai Singakutti – Tamil
1983 – Gudachari No.1 – Telugu
1983 – Roshagadu – Telugu
1984 – Challenge – Telugu
1984 – Rustum – Telugu
1984 – Idavelakku Shesham – Malayalam
1984 – Abhimanyudu – Telugu
1984 – Hero – Telugu
1984 – Agnigundam – Telugu
1984 – Neenga Kettavai – Tamil
1984 – Vaazhkai – Tamil
1984 – Kairasikkaran – Tamil
1984 – Prachanda Kulla – Kannada
1984 – Niraparaadhi – Malayalam
1984 – Umanilayam – Malayalam
1984 – Bullet – Malayalam
1985 – Ottayan – Malayalam
1985 – Revenge – Malayalam
1985 – Chorakku Chora – Malayalam
1985 – Jeevante Jeevan – Malayalam
1985 – Kiratham – Malayalam
1985 – Prathikarajwaala – Malayalam
1985 – Chattamtho Poratam – Telugu
1985 – Shri Datta Darshanam – Telugu
1985 – Donga – Telugu
1986 – Raakshasudu – Telugu
1986 – Kirathakudu – Telugu
1986 – Annoru Raavil – Malayalam
1986 – Urukku Manushyan – Malayalam
1986 – Pensimham – Malayalam
1986 – Kulambadikal – Malayalam
1987 – Aalappirandhavan – Tamil
1988 – Jeeva – Tamil
1988 – Khaidi no.786 – Telugu
1989 – Miss Pamela – Malayalam
1989 – Layanam – Malayalam
1989 – Andru Peytha Mazhaiyil – Tamil
1989 – Adharvam – Malayalam
1989 – Praayapoorthiyaayavarkku Maathram – Malayalam
1989 – Pick Pocket – Tamil
1989 – New Year – Malayalam
1989 – Sonthakkaran – Tamil
1989 – Geethanjali – Telugu
1990 – Adhisaya Manithan – Tamil
1990 – Shesham Screenil – Malayalam
1990 – Naale Ennundekil – Malayalam
1990 – Avasara Police 100 – Tamil
1990 – Sunday 7 PM – Malayalam
1990 – Bamma Maata Bangaru Baata – Telugu
1991 – Aditya 369 – Telugu
1991 – Thalattu Ketkudhamma – Tamil
1991 – Chaithanya – Telugu
1991 – Thambikku Oru Paattu – Tamil
1991 – Idhayam – Tamil
1992 – Amaran – Tamil
1992 – Naadody – Malayalam
1992 – Vasudha – Malayalam
1992 – Rishi – Malayalam
1992 – Halli Meshtru – Kannada
1992 – Antham – Telugu
1993 – Sabash Babu – Tamil
1993 – Bava Bavamaridi – Telugu
1993 – Saakshaal Sreeman Chaatthunni – Malayalam
1993 – Kunthi puthrudu – Telugu
1993 – Govindha Govindha – Telugu
1993 – Mafia – Malayalam
1993 – Aadhityan – Tamil
1993 – Ulle Veliye – Tamil
1993 – Alimayya – Kannada
1993 – Rakshana – Telugu
1993 – Muta Mestri – Telugu
1994 – Oru Vasantha Geetham – Tamil
1994 – Athiradi Padai – Tamil
1994 – Palnati Pourusham – Telugu
1994 – Maro Quit India – Telugu
1994 – CID Unnikrishnan BA BED – Malayalam
1994 – Chinna – Kannada
1994 – Gentleman Security – Malayalam
1995 – Villadhi Villain – Tamil
1995 – Hijack – Malayalam
1995 – Spadikam – Malayalam
1995 – Mazhavil Koodaram – Malayalam
1995 – Special Squard – Malayalam
1995 – Karma – Malayalam
1995 – Kaattile Thadi Thevarude Aana – Malayalam
1995 – Thumboli Kadappuram – Malayalam
1995 – Three Men Army – Malayalam
1995 – Arabikadaloram – Malayalam
1996 – Pallivathukkal Thommichan – Malayalam
1996 – Sugavaasam – Malayalam
1996 – Sulthan Hyderali – Malayalam
1996 – Kireedamillaatha Raajakkanmaar – Malayalam
1996 – Lucky Man – Tamil
1996 – Coimbatore Mappillai – Tamil
1996 – Kishkinda Kaanda – Telugu
1996 – Pacha thoranam – Telugu
1996 – Maa aavida collector – Telugu
1996 – Kishkinda Kaanda – Tamil
1996 – Subaash – Tamil

This is a part of What is an Item Number? series. In this series we are covering the history of item number in Bollywood. Silk Smitha falls in the second stage “Mujra and Item Numbers – 1970s to 1990s”. Visit the What is an Item Number? series page for details on the item girls of the three stages of item numbers:

  • Early item numbers – 1930s to 1960s
  • Mujra and Item numbers – 1970s to 1990s
  • Modern item numbers – 2000s

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